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Spanish judge penalises Arsenal, ManU

Discussion in 'Premier League' started by johan neeskens, Oct 29, 2007.

  1. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    Sorry, link in Dutch.

    Arsenal was fined three million Euros because they got Fabregas at the age of 16; as he did not have a full pro contract with Barcelona yet, Arsenal did not have to pay a transfer fee. Same story for ManU contracting Piqué for free. This is a complex story that I've written about before on these boards. In countries like Spain and indeed the Netherlands, clubs are not allowed to give their youngsters a full pro contract until they reach the age of 18. At a younger age, they get a neo-pro contract which obviously does not protect them from premiership clubs making their move as in the premiership there's no age limit for contracting professional footballers (correct me if I'm wrong). I'll be interested to see how Arsenal and ManU will react to this; I'm guessing they'll refuse to pay as what they did does not go against British law. Barcelona have already announced that they will take their case to European court if ManU and Arsenal refuse to pay. I'm predicting that the EU will soon make an end to premiership clubs snapping up continental teenagers on the cheap and I'm glad for it.
     


  2. GranCanMan

    GranCanMan Member

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    A complex issue. Man Utd and Arsenal will see it as them gaining competitive advantage of two outstanding young players who were not contractually obliged to any club. If they wanted to move, then that is their decision and they made it.

    Barcelona will see it as their laws are exposing them to moves like this which deprives them of their best young players.

    I don't want Man Utd or Arsenal to have to pay, but morally, they probably should....
     
  3. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    The EU needs to takes a stand in my view. It's unfair competition.
     
  4. GranCanMan

    GranCanMan Member

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    I've come across similar obsticles in my job to be fair, where one rule that is in place makes it hard to prevent things from happening, regardless of how unfair it seems.

    I'm sure if Cesc and Pique really wanted stay at Barcelona then they would have done. And, who's more responsible for Fabregas' development? Barca? Or Arsenal?

    You can't expect English clubs to stand back while Barcelona walk away with the best young players in the world. And to be honest, the way that Barca flagrantly tapped up Henry and Fabregas in recent years, they don't deserve sympathy. If they can tap up and sign contracted players, the Arsenal and Man Utd can sign up non-contracted players....:p
     


  5. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    I can completely understand why premiership clubs want to do this. My problem lies with the fact that there's one rule in one country and another in the next. Like I said I'm pretty confident that this is going against EU regulations in principle (let's ask the European Commissioner for Competition)

    Overall I also don't think it's good for football. What's the point of clubs investing in a youth development system if this is allowed to go on? There's no return on investment, not for clubs in the smaller leagues as they know their best youngsters will be snapped up for free, and not for the big clubs either as it's much cheaper for them to scout the best continental talent.
     
  6. GranCanMan

    GranCanMan Member

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    This is really an issue for the continental clubs to take up with the EU or their governments, not for a judge to fine our clubs. Man Utd and Arsenal have technically done nothing wrong. They are governed by British law and therefore we do not fall under the juristiction of the EU. I cannot see how they can impose or enforce a fine at this point.


    In principle it is harsh on Barca etc to have these players taken away from them. But if Barca really wanted to keep them then surely they would have done more to prevent them from leaving in the first place. This is retrospective jealousy from what I can see. Barca let them go, watched them develop into great players (especially Fabregas) and now they don't like it.

    Even if the fines are paid, what's 3 million euros when you have a player worth 10 times that?

    And Arsene Wenger is a very clever bloke. He'll argue that you cannot sanction someone when they have not broken the law. Barca and the EU have to prove that we have broken the law and we haven't because the law we are governed under is British law, not EU......
     
  7. lanman

    lanman BigSoccer Supporter

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    There are different laws throughout Europe which can lead to unfair competition. English law would prevent Arsenal (for arguments sake) from signing a 14 year old from Argentina and bringing him through their youth ranks unless he had an EU passport.
    Some leagues restrict the number of non-EU players a club can register, others don't. Some countries naturalise players at a quicker rate than others to circumvent these rules.
     
  8. ApproachWithCaution

    ApproachWithCaution Member

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    This stinks of sour grapes on Barcelona's part. They should just grow up and get over it. They have coped perfectly well without Fabregas up until now.
     
  9. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    I don't think a fine will ever be paid to Barcelona. What I do think is that this wil be brought to European court, forcing the EU to take a stand. I mean you can argue about who's right, British law or Spanish law, fact remains that there's one law in one EU country and a different one in the next, creating a situation of unfair competition in football within EU borders. The EU treats football as an industry and its rulings in this matter would override national law, as it did with the Bosman ruling; the British are just as subject to that as anyone else in the EU. Add to that the fact that it's official EU policy to ensure fair competition in football!

    It's not just Barcelona who suffers from this btw. There are a number of Dutch 16-year olds who joined the premiership without their club getting any compensation for it. And we're not uniquely talking about youngsters who were bought from big Dutch clubs who can afford to pay for legal support.
     
  10. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    The EU does not have a common immigration law (yet) so what the individual leagues and countries do about non-EU players/workers is up to them. It does become EU business when it concerns EU players moving from one EU league to the next. The EU does not allow for unfair competition and puts up a strong fight against it. It's why Microsoft was recently fined a shedload, after all.
     
  11. GranCanMan

    GranCanMan Member

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    The EU also stupulates that anyone old enough to work is entitled to freedom of movement anywhere in Europe. Cesc was old enough to work (under British law) and was perfectly entitled to move to England. The EU created this "freedom of movement" law, they cannot now renegade on it because one big football club don't like it or because it doesn't suit Laporta's interests.

    Eu = freedom of movement for all those of those legally entitled to work. Barca will just have to live with it....
     
  12. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    This isn't about playing the blame game, it's about there being a likeliness that the EU will want to standardise regulations to ensure fair competition.
     
  13. GranCanMan

    GranCanMan Member

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    If no one is being blamed, why have Man Utd and Arsenal been fined at all? Someone, somewhere is looking to blame or punish people to make up for an own-goal in Spanish law which has left their clubs exposed to exploitation by foreign clubs who are simply looking to manipulate the tranfer market back in their direction.

    Like Ianman said, there are laws in Spain that give Spanish clubs advantages over their English counterparts. For example, the signing of south american talent. Spanish clubs have managed to acquire the likes of Lionel Messi, Geovanni Dos Santos, Ronaldo, Rivaldo and Robinho all before any of them were remotely house hold names. The reason? Because English clubs are not allowed to sign any foreign national (outside of the EU) unless they have played 75% or more of their countries internationals in the last 2 years. What's more, if their country lies outside the top 70, then it's even harder to sign them, hence Mark Gonzalez's protracted transfer to Liverpool.

    So, where the Spanish clubs lose out in one area, they more than make up for in another......
     
  14. johan neeskens

    johan neeskens Member

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    That's what I was saying, I don't think there's a legal way of forcing Arsenal and ManU to pay Barcelona, I mean why should they care about what a Spanish judge thinks. It'll be a different story though if Barcelona decides to take this to European court as that'll force the EU to take a position in this. I'm guessing that that's why Barcelona are forcing the issue, they probably don't even expect this fine to be paid, they just want to force the EU to make their point of view clear.

    And also again, the transfers of non-EU footballers to EU clubs are irrelevant to this specific discussion as there is no common EU immigration policy and it's left up to the individual countries and football associations to decide what to about clubs signing non-EU players. In the Netherlands however and I believe also in Germany and some other EU countries, governments have imposed a minimum salary for non-EU players; a minimum salary that is so comparatively high that for your ordinary club they weigh too heavily on the budget. So non-EU footballers are interesting only for the richest clubs anyway.
     
  15. Leedsunited

    Leedsunited Member

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    Bet they'd take him back though. I also think he may be a bargain at 3 million of any currency. I wouldn't think any of Europes top flight clubs have never tapped anyone up. Chelsea were forced to settle for £5.5million with Leeds, because they approached Tom Taiwo and Michael Woods through their parents and offered the parents money and home improvements. The problem for Chelsea is that another player, (now Tottenham) Danny Rose, was also approached, but his parents refused and went straight to Leeds with the offer. Obviously Chelsea were under a suspended points deduction, so had to settle for perhaps five times what Leeds would have sold them for if they had legally approached them.

    Until everyone adopts open transfer policies, with all of them being fully completed in the presence of an independant body, who can supervise all parts of the deal, then a fine of 3 million euros isn't going to rattle Arsenal up. They got a £50m player for peanuts.
     
  16. Teso Dos Bichos

    Teso Dos Bichos Dance puppets

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    Exactly.
     
  17. Devil_78

    Devil_78 Member

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    They allready have a standardised law. At the age of 16, when you can legally start work, you are entitled to the freedom of movement within the EU. It is not Arsenals and Man Utds fault that Spain has a law raising the bar to 18. If we want uniformity, what will happen? The EU (27 countries) rising the bar to 18 to match Spain at 18 (1 country) or will Spain eventually have to bring the bar down to match the EU? Hmm. I wonder who is going to budge first. i single country? Or a trading block of hundreds of millions of people made up of 26 other democracies?
     
  18. GranCanMan

    GranCanMan Member

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    What a world class point.....
     
  19. Devil_78

    Devil_78 Member

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    Hardly. Either way. If Barca go to the EU to get their money, we'll all be dead by the time the EU makes a decision.

    It does seem to move with the speed of a constipated snail.

    Unless the gravy train is rolling by.
     
  20. Marko

    Marko New Member

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    Poor little Barcelona, being exploited by those evil folk at Manchester United and Arsenal.

    The players who moved were not forced to do so, and willingly signed contracts with their respective new clubs.

    Surely what's important here is what each individual player wants? Nothing unfair whatsoever.
     

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